Milwaukee Talks: Sports reporter Jessie Garcia
Jessie Garcia joined WTMJ-TV in 1994 as a sports reporter and anchor. Prior to landing this position, Garcia spent two years reporting for WISC in her hometown of Madison.
Today, 38-year-old Garcia, a graduate of Boston University, works part time in order to spend as much time as possible with her family. She has two sons: Jake, age 9, and Charlie, age 5. She has been married to her husband, Paul, for 14 years.
Recently, OnMilwaukee.com caught up with Garcia and discussed her passions: sports and family.
OnMilwaukee.com: How did you get interested in journalism and sports?
Jessie Garcia: I was interested in writing and reporting from about age 8 on. I used to interview everyone in the neighborhood. If my family had a party, I would walk around asking all of the grownups their favorite color or food or movie.
I was not into sports, however, as a child. I was not a good athlete and my mother was not at all sports-minded. She was a single mom for many years and I am an only child, so it was just the two of us. Then my mom met my step dad and he was a big Badger sports fan.
I grew up in Madison, and he started taking me to Badger games. I just got hooked on how much fun sports can be.
My mother was a role model in a different way, though. She was a carpenter and an architect and always told me women could be anything they wanted. I decided to try writing both sports and news for my high school newspaper and found I liked sports much more. I just stuck with it from there.
OMC: Did you participate in sports at any point in your life?
JG: I ran track, played softball and did a little tennis and skiing. I knew I wasn't destined to be an athlete when I played right field in softball and hoped the ball never came my way!
OMC: Do you know more about sports than your husband?
JG: My husband's a huge sports fan, too. He's from Minnesota and he still loves the Vikings and Twins. I would say we are pretty equal, although I was telling him the difference between the Sam, Mike and Will linebackers the other day.
OMC: When you go to a party, do you find yourself talking sports with the guys, or in your world do women like to talk sports just as much as the guys do?
JG: Women are so up on sports. Lately, everyone wants to talk Favre and of course everyone has a very strong opinion.
I like chatting about sports, but I also like to talk about kids and schools and where is the best place to buy tennis shoes. That's what happens when you have two kids!
OMC: Do you encourage your sons to play sports?
JG: My 9-year-old loves all sports. The 5-year-old follows his brother's lead on everything, so he's just now getting into it and wanting to watch the Brewers every night.
We played a lot of sports with them just as a way to get outside. They both really like baseball and soccer. The older one also does tennis and just discovered golf this summer, so now he's asking to go to the driving range all the time.
OMC: Ever coached one of your kids' teams?
JG: My husband is the coach of the family and has coached several of the older one's teams.
OMC: Who was your most memorable interview?
JG: I once was in a press conference with Michael Jordan. That was memorable. I have done a few one-on-one interviews with Favre. I had a lot of fun following Mike McCarthy from 7 a.m. until 11 p.m. one day last year. But one of the most inspiring interviews I ever did was with a 100-year-old bowler. I guess there's not one interview that knocks all the rest to the side.
OMC: If the Brewers get into the playoffs, which team would you like to see them go up against?
JG: At this point they don't match up well with anybody because their pitching has been so spotty. I fear that even if they somehow make the playoffs, they could win 1 or 2 games and be done. However, Prince Fielder has stepped up his game in the wake of the Yost firing so at least there has been a spark there. Perhaps this final home stand will be magical (and the Mets are unpredictable) so it's not out of the realm of possibility to get into the postseason but it's not very likely. That 9th inning collapse in Chicago really hurt them.Page 1 of 2 (view all on one page)
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